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versailles

a recent visitor to Versailles told me that if you wait in line and purchase the English speaking tour you can shortcut the waiting line and get in much faster.Does this make sense??

Posted by
403 posts

Paris Museum Pass lets you skip the ticket line. Worth it! You still have to wait in line for security, and if you want to rent the audio guide.

Posted by
47 posts

I have never heard of this. The only "tour" that I know of is renting the little recorded hand held tour things after you get in. I don't think there is anyway to skip the line, but don't worry, the line looks miles long, but we got through in about an hour.

Posted by
719 posts

Get the Paris Museum Pass. No tix line, just security. But, you get to security so much faster and with less people, it is way faster than anything else that I've done.

Posted by
15 posts

If you have a Museum Pass as rick recommends you skip a large portion of the lines(we were there this pase Easter and it was very crowded) And do follow his advice and take the early RER train from Paris because the place is HUGE and easily will take an entire day. I don't know about the tour purchase, we just downloaded Ricks audio guide to Versailles and used that while there. It told us as much as we needed to know.

Posted by
11507 posts

Don, the person told you the truth, you have to book ahead, its the tour of the Kings Apartments, there is a seperate entrance for it, and apparently is a very good tour. Please check out the Versailles website ( it has english, click on union jack icon) and will explain all the options. Click on "Plan your Visit" . You must prebook tours. You will meet group and enter at a different entrance then rest of folks. Skipping ticket lines at Versailles always make sense, the lines for tickets can be very very long. There can still be lines for security, and those are not skippable , even with the Museum Pass,, ( which is good for skipping the ticket lines though).. The tour however goes through a seperate security line.

Posted by
719 posts

something else to consider, as Paul stated, this place is HUGE. Even bigger when you consider the gardens, so I recommend hitting a market in Paris before embarking and loading up on picnic supplies (bread, cheese, fruit, prosciutto, wine, etc.). When (if) you enter the Petit Trianon, a picnic spot near the Domaine du Marie Antoinette will be calling you, and you'll have all of the necessary accoutrements for success! This is one of my favorite spots in all of Europe, so you won't want to miss it. You can also rent bikes or paddle boats to explore the gardens and grand canal, respectively.

Posted by
34 posts

I was just in Versailles 2 weeks ago. When we got off the train (RER) there is an office just across the street (I don't recall the name) it's an office where they are selling tours and they sell tickets for Versailles. We bought our tickets there, no line up so when we got to Versailles we didn't have to wait in line for tickets.

Posted by
11507 posts

Be aware the ticket place across from the station is a travel agency , not offically part of palace system, the tickets are good, but you will pay more then other methods. For some people this may be worth it , but with some preplanning not nessesary.

Posted by
8 posts

In reading Rick Steve's guide to Paris it appears that it is cheaper to buy a museum pass in Paris with access to Versailles.I am not sure where to buy this pass in Paris

Posted by
9109 posts

http://en.parismuseumpass.com/rub-the-pass-points-of-sale-3.htm You can purchase the pass at any participating site, TI offices, FNAC, or the airports. You can also purchase it at the official site above and have it delivered to your hotel. I did this a few weeks ago and it was worth the extra fee for the convenience. On other trips I've found that some locations don't always have all denominations of the pass in stock.

Posted by
8 posts

What is a TI is that a tourist office .I am arriving by cruise so that nixes the airport Is there one of these offices near the Eiffel Tower?

Posted by
719 posts

You can buy the pass in the Invalides, which isn't too far from the ET. It has its own metro stop, too.

Posted by
11507 posts

don, the Museum pass is easy buy, it is sold at most of the places it is valid at,, so near your area( I will assume you are staying near the ET right, in the 7th?) you could buy it at the Invalids Army Museum( which is worth a visit!) the Rodin, the Orsay( go to window outside ) . Have you looked at the Museum Pass website? It is easy to use and in english, literally just google Paris Museum Pass. And then click on the "Offical " site. Under where to buy click on "in Paris". You do not need to pay extra to have it mailed to you ! Note, if you visit Versailles on Sat or Sun you will have to pay an extra 8 euros to access the formal gardens nearest the palace( normally included) as this is when they do the fountain shows .

Posted by
8 posts

yes you do have to pay postage to have it mailed to you.It is on their website.The suggestion near the ET are helpful

Posted by
228 posts

Don, you could do as we did... tourists tend to form lines no matter how long they get. Yet, if you go to the front of the line... you can simply walk to within a dozen feet of the entrance and whisk your way in to the castle. As Julia Childs said, " Do so with authority, never be scared, always be brave."

Posted by
10403 posts

@Jean-Paul,
Are you suggesting that don cuts in line rather than stand there like everyone else has to do? That is so wrong!!!

Posted by
9109 posts

"...Yet, if you go to the front of the line... you can simply walk to within a dozen feet of the entrance and whisk your way in to the castle...." Do so at your own risk. I saw this happen last month. A group of teenage girls tried to cut in the front of the line when the guard was distracted answering someone's question. The father of a family in front of me told them to go to the back of the line, when they pretended not to hear him he pushed one of them to the ground, it got very ugly after that. The guard detained the girls and radioed for backup. They must have had more problems later-on because there were no less than 10 guards watching the front of the line as I was leaving and heading to the RER station.

Posted by
335 posts

The Museum Pass may only let you into the Chateau and get you the audioguide (I think). If you want to see the gardens on Saturday when the fountains are going and classical music is playing, and also see the Trianons and Marie A's village, I'd suggest getting the Passport ticket at an FNAC store ahead of time. Thus you skip at least the ticket line. And do take the earliest RER available. Another hint: If you want to actually SEE the hall of mirrors (instead of seeing only hoards of people standing in the hall), look at the map of the Chateau, walk very briskly past the lineup to get an audio guide, continue your brisk walk thru the first many rooms until you reach the Hall of Mirrors before anyone else gets there. Enjoy the light coming in the windows and bouncing off the mirrors, enjoy the peace and quiet. Then retrace your steps to get the audio guide (if you want it) and see the rooms you missed during your dash.

Posted by
68 posts

@Jean-Paul Cut to the front of the line? That is disgusting. What makes you sooooo special that you are better than everyone else???? It's behavior like THAT which makes American tourists despised, gives all of us a bad reputation and is the total opposite of the kind of attitude that Rick Steves seems to promote. FOR SHAME.

Posted by
9109 posts

"...It's behavior like THAT which makes American tourists despised...." Both the girls trying to cut the line and the father were French (or possibly from Belgium or CH). But I've noticed from previous trips that local teenagers cutting in front of long lines is a favorite past time, and seems to be tolerated to some degree. Also, seen it at cinemas and Euro Disney. It must drive the Brits crazy.

Posted by
8 posts

we are grandparents and Cutting into lines is not our thing.I appreciate all the helpful suggestions everyone has submitted but the line cutting deserves its own thread Please only helpful suggestions

Posted by
34 posts

yes at the travel agency across the street where you can by your Versailles tickets cost a little more. We paid 2 euros more. Well worth it to avoid standing in lines for hours.

Posted by
11507 posts

At Euro Disney we had a group of teen boys plow through the crowded confined line for Space Mountain, I was really pissed and said something , one of the boys just looked back and smirked as he and his friends continued forward. I really really dislike like cutters.

Posted by
719 posts

"But he does have a French name, or at least wants people to call him one..." James, you live for opportunities such as this, don't you...? Don, I didn't mention before, but there is very little english within the chateau. So, you'll want some sort of tour, even if it's just Rick's Paris Guide. In my opinion, the Gardens are really what makes Versailles spectacular (less remaining effects of a revolution...), but a tour helps in the Chateau.